Born Heidemarie Jiline Sander in 1943, Sander studied textile design in her hometown of Hamburg before opening her own boutique in 1967. Her designs had garnered such success that by the early 1990’s international buyer and stockists would fly to Germany specially to get their hands on her pieces. Known as the queen of clean, this pioneer of minimalist fashion transposed the working woman’s idea of conceptualism and has grown from strength to strength since Rodolfo Paglialunga took over as creative director. And now with designers such as Alexander Wang and Victoria Beckham making echoes of the same designs, Sander is finding herself having to navigate her work through a look that has become mainstream in recent years.
Sander’s retro white leather loafers, stretch cotton cropped trousers, and cotton poplin shirt are a far cry from the tradition of women’s clothing, but Jil Sander manages to pull the androgynous look off flawlessly. On the other end of the spectrum is an effeminate array of pastelle-hued leather jackets, pink cotton poplin shirts, and strapless sheath dresses. Finish any of these outfits with a Jil Sander Ibiza leather tote bag with cut-out detail or her 3-angle water snake leather bag for a subtle yet quirky wardrobe addition.